Combating ecosystem collapse from the tropics to the Antarctic

Bergstrom, Dana, Wienecke, Barbara C., van den Hoff, John, Hughes, Lesley, Lindenmayer, David B., Ainsworth, Tracy D., Baker, Christopher M., Bland, Lucie, Bowman, David M.J.S., Brooks, Shaun T., Canadell, Josep G., Constable, Andrew J., Dafforn, Katherine, Depledge, Michael H., Dickson, Catherine, Duke, Norman C., Helmstedt, Kate J., Holz, Andres, Johnson, Craig R., McGeoch, Melodie A., Melbourne-thomas, Jessica, Morgain, Rachel, Nicholson, Emily, Prober, Suzanne M., Raymond, Ben, Ritchie, Euan G., Robinson, Sharon A., Ruthrof, Katinka X., Setterfield, Samantha A., Sgro, Carla M., Stark, Jonathan S., Travers, Toby, Trebilco, Rowan, Ward, Delphi F.L., Wardle, Glenda M., Williams, Kristen J., Zylstra, Phillip J., and Shaw, Justine D. (2021) Combating ecosystem collapse from the tropics to the Antarctic. Global Change Biology, 27. pp. 1692-1703.

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Abstract

Globally, collapse of ecosystems—potentially irreversible change to ecosystem structure, composition and function—imperils biodiversity, human health and well-being. We examine the current state and recent trajectories of 19 ecosystems, spanning 58° of latitude across 7.7 M km2, from Australia's coral reefs to terrestrial Antarctica. Pressures from global climate change and regional human impacts, occurring as chronic ‘presses’ and/or acute ‘pulses’, drive ecosystem collapse. Ecosystem responses to 5–17 pressures were categorised as four collapse profiles—abrupt, smooth, stepped and fluctuating. The manifestation of widespread ecosystem collapse is a stark warning of the necessity to take action. We present a three-step assessment and management framework (3As Pathway Awareness, anticipation and Action) to aid strategic and effective mitigation to alleviate further degradation to help secure our future.

Item ID: 73469
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1365-2486
Keywords: adaptive management, climate change, ecosystem collapse, human impacts, pressures
Copyright Information: © 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Date Deposited: 11 May 2022 01:13
FoR Codes: 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4101 Climate change impacts and adaptation > 410102 Ecological impacts of climate change and ecological adaptation @ 60%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410404 Environmental management @ 40%
SEO Codes: 19 ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY, CLIMATE CHANGE AND NATURAL HAZARDS > 1905 Understanding climate change > 190507 Global effects of climate change (excl. Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica and the South Pacific) (excl. social impacts) @ 50%
19 ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY, CLIMATE CHANGE AND NATURAL HAZARDS > 1901 Adaptation to climate change > 190102 Ecosystem adaptation to climate change @ 50%
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